I took March's official designation and it’s theme of “Celebrating Women Who are Making History Around the Globe” as a prompt to showcase the many amazing women musicians who I’ve played with/met/shared stages with over my own history of my making songs. Those I’ve highlighted on my Instagram feed thus far include artists Kaitlin McGaw, Valerie Orth, Bo Chang, Paige Clem, Sara Rodenburg, Erica Sorenson, Michele Kappel, Aireene Espiritu, Maggie Forti, Briget Boyle, Beth Marlin, Amy Obenski, Judi Jaeger, Nina Jo Smith, The Keller Sisters, Loretta Lynch (Val Esway/Heather Davidson/Ari Fellows-Manion), Claudia Russell and Jacqui Naylor. And really, that’s just a start. What’s even better, is that all of these women are still making music on their own terms. Follow along and see who I highlight next, but more importantly, listen to these women.
While I’m at it, I wanted to share a few more women’s voices who I’ve been listening to or reading this week, all pushing back on our patriarchal society:
I dug into the book “Foreverland: "after hearing it author Heather Havrilesky discuss the book and the sexist backlash she’s been facing (from men and women) in its wake, having dared to be both funny and candid about the realties of marriage.
"It seems to me to be a central mechanism of a patriarchal society that it instructs us to value art that is disembodied, and to value a form of intelligence that is disembodied." — Melissa Febos
And I loved this interview with engineer/producer/musical artist Maryam Qudus in the latest TapeOp , and not just because I’ve had the fortune to work with her. It’s a GREAT read about creative/musical process and egalitarian couples figuring out artist life/work/relationship balance. (Qudus, aka Spacemoth, a rising star in the recording studio and on the airwaves, engineered my Department of the West at Tiny Telephone.)
A few years ago, in the wake of Senator Elizabeth Warren’s silencing by the senate, the theme of 2018’s Women’s month became 'Nevertheless, She Persisted' (after which I gladly bought a T-shirt from Ms. featuring those words). I went looking for a photo of the shirt, found this photo of Warren, and couldn’t help but notice a parallel with a recent performance shot, which felt apropros:
I didn’t play ‘Long Roads,’ from Department of the West, last Wednesday, but while I was up on stage, I was definitely thinking of the long roads I (and all women) have been on just to get to here, about persisting, and how that’s what change, and justice, and peace takes.